29/03/2011 - Permalink

Curry Chef of the Year to be named

Related topics: Community / Leisure, culture and heritage

Restaurants and takeaways in Oswestry, Dorrington, Bayston Hill and Shrewsbury will compete in the final of Shropshire Council’s 2011 ‘Curry Chef of the Year’ competition.

The four finalists are: Oswestry Tandoori, Dorrington Old Hall Persian Restaurant, Mahim Indian Takeaway in Bayston Hill and Café Saffron Indian Restaurant in Shrewsbury.

The winner of the award will be the restaurant or takeaway in the Shropshire Council area with the nominated chef producing the best curry, side dish and rice accompaniment, as well as demonstrating high standards of food hygiene in their premises and catering practices.

The finalists will take part in a ‘cook-off’ in front of a panel of judges at Radbrook Catering College in Shrewsbury on Monday 4 April 2011, where they will have one hour to cook and display their chosen menu.

All Indian, Bangladeshi, Balti and similar restaurants and takeaways in the Shropshire Council area were invited to enter the competition.  The entries were assessed by the council’s food safety team, making reference to the most recent food hygiene inspection. The successful applicants were visited to ensure that good food safety practices are being met and to taste the chef’s chosen dishes.

At the final cook-off the competing curries will be tasted and assessed by the judges. The winner will be awarded a trophy as well as the title of Shropshire Council Curry Chef of the Year 2011.

The first Shropshire Council Curry Chef of the Year competition was held last year when the winner was Abdul Husen of Café Saffron, who will be hoping to retain the title.

Councillor Cecilia Motley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for environmental health said:

“I would like to thank all who entered this year – there was a lot of interest following the 2010 competition and my congratulations go to each of our four finalists.

“This competition highlights the many excellent curry houses that we have across the county, and places the focus on the important work carried out by our environmental health officers to ensure that our restaurants and takeaways are safe, hygienic places.”

Mandy Cooke, Food Safety Officer, who was part of the team which assessed entries, said:

“The first round of judging has proved extremely difficult due to the quality and enthusiasm of entrants.  The four successful restaurants and takeaways have demonstrated exceptionally high standards of hygiene, culinary expertise, flair and creativity to warrant their place in the final.”

The competition judges will be: Councillor Ann Hartley, Shropshire Council Deputy Leader; Bruce McMichael, Editor of Taste Shropshire magazine; James Day of the Gourmet Life dining club; and Sean McNulty, catering manager at Radbrook College.